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In Brief

Thursday, January 6, 2005; Page B03

THE REGION

D.C. Leads Nation in Per-Pupil Spending

The District spends $11,269 annually per public school pupil, more than any state, according to a report by the Bethesda-based newspaper Education Week.

The Quality Counts report, which adjusted the spending figures for regional cost differences, said the District's per-pupil spending was slightly ahead of that in New Jersey, New York, Vermont and Wyoming. Utah ranked last at $5,132 per pupil.

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Maryland was No. 15, at $8,517 per pupil. Virginia was No. 27, and its spending -- $7,735 per pupil -- was one dollar above the national average. Virginia, though, had one of the widest disparities in the money available to each school district because state and local funding is linked to property wealth.

Cases Increase During Mild Season for Flu

Flu cases are increasing in some parts of the area, though not unexpectedly for early January and at levels indicating a mild influenza season, health officials said yesterday.

Because of a half-dozen cases reported in the Baltimore area and in Montgomery and Prince George's counties, Maryland's level of flu activity was reclassified in the past two weeks as "regional" instead of "local." For the week that ended Dec. 25, the state had 42 confirmed cases -- compared with 1,130 a year ago.

Maryland is one of six states that had regional activity in late December, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. Virginia stayed at the local activity level.

Flu activity in the District increased from the sporadic level to local this week, a health department spokesman said.

Record Number of Dulles Travelers in '04

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority said about 23 million people flew in and out of Dulles International Airport last year -- the highest total in the airport's history.

Airport officials cited the start of Independence Air service, as well as competitive fares from other carriers, for the increase. Nearly 17 million travelers used Dulles in 2003.

Officials also said that Reagan National Airport is expected to near its own record. Travel there has increased more than 12 percent -- more than double the national average.

Authority spokesman Tom Sullivan said the number of passengers at National -- which has not been totaled yet for 2004 -- could surpass 16 million. In 1993, Reagan had a record 16.3 million travelers.

THE DISTRICT

Disabled Children Services Stepped Up

D.C. city and school officials said yesterday they are increasing efforts to share data on children with disabilities and to ensure that the youths get the services they need as early as possible.


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